Your questions answered by a  Hollywood professional

A bit of Hollywood humor 

Updated Jan 28, 2019

Screenwriting Help E-Mail Blog

Updated Jan 28, 2019

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This week's question

Doug, do you ever feel like you don't want to finish a script or even write any more of it even though you really do want to finish it? Does that sound too weird?


This week's Answer: 

Finishing Not Finishing

Actually, that is an excellent question and my answer may astound you. Or at maybe  somewhat surprise you. Or at least be one that you don't expect. Or maybe you expect it, but not exactly the way you expected.

Anyway, to my answer:  Every time. Or almost every time. Or usually. Once in a while.

What I'm saying is that you never know what you're going to be feeling or thinking about your current script and often what you're thinking or feeling or even believing is often not the truth.

Here's an example. I'm currently working on a script for a client, doing a major rewrite and it's going quite well. But for the last few days, I was thinking that my writing was a catastrophe and that I would never finish it and started talking myself into believing that I didn't want to work on it anymore and that it wouldn't turn out well. 

I ask you, members of the jury, where is the evidence that supports those self-negating statements?

I had forgotten that I've written many screenplays, finished them all, have sold scripts, optioned scripts, developed and analyzed and improved many more. I absolutely know how to write a comedy (the script is a comedy).  There's your evidence, jury. Your honor, I rest my case!

But in this "case," the evidence wasn't enough on my own. I called a writing partner, read a few scenes to him, listened to his positive reactions as I did, and even during the time I was reading it, I realized, "Hey, I can write!"

Of course, you can,  Dummy.

I charge you for contempt of court. Pay the bailiff on your way out.

See? It never pays to isolate yourself from your writing buddies or to doubt yourself.


Doug Herman

Are Still doubting yourself as a screenwriter? Feel free to click HERE to be sent "The 100 Screenwriter's Affirmations that helped me to keep writing even though I thought I sucked even though I wrote these 100 Affirmations so I know I don't completely suck."


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